Un De Sceaux amongst Clarence House octet chasing Ascot riches

Mon 15 Jan 2018

Un De Sceaux is one of just eight remaining entries in the Royal Salute Whisky Clarence House Chase at Ascot on Saturday.

Willie Mullins' multiple Grade One winner is chasing a hat-trick in the race and will be the first three-time winner of the two-mile-one furlong contest.

One of those victories came when the race was staged at Cheltenham last year after Ascot was deemed unraceable the week before.

Mullins said: "He goes to Ascot this weekend.

"He's in great shape and I couldn't see him coming back to Leopardstown unless there is some bad weather or something prevents him from running on Saturday."

Nicky Henderson has left in his novice, Brain Power, who would be having just his third run over fences. He was last seen unseating David Mullins in the Henry VIII Novices' Chase at Sandown.

Kylemore Lough could drop back down in trip for Harry Fry. He has only had one run for his new stable since leaving Kerry Lee. Lee could run Top Gamble, second to Un De Sceaux at Cork on his penultimate outing.

Paul Nicholls has two possibles in the progressive Cyrname and San Benedeto.

God's Own could be out again quickly for Tom George, having finished third behind Waiting Patiently at Kempton on Saturday, while Nigel Hawke has left bang-in-form handicapper Speredek in the mix.

While Hawke has not confirmed Speredek as a definite runner, it appears he is very tempted by the challenge.

The Devon handler said: "We're certainly looking at it. Obviously there's one horse (Un De Sceaux) in there but we've got to consider it.

"It's a likely small field. The horse is fit and well and it's £150,000 race with prize-money down to sixth. He's only got so many options.

"You should never be afraid of just one horse and he's in such good form he's got to take his chance somewhere."

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